Pröll Demands "Active Tolerance"

Der Standard (10/18/02):

Klosterneuburg – In a speech given by the Governor of Lower Austria, Erwin Pröll, at the Municipal Museum of Klosterneuburg, he spoke of "active tolerance" which means not merely "tolerating people of different faiths" but rather "decisively speaking out against racism and hatred of foreigners." The occasion was the unveiling of a commemorative plaque which is to be erected there where the Synagogue of Klosterneuburg once stood.

A member of the Austrian People’s Party (ÖVP), Governor Pröll spoke before a very special audience: ninety-two Austrian Jews expelled during the time of the Nazis, along with their families and relatives, who upon invitation from Leon Zelman’s Vienna Jewish Welcome Service, visited their old native country. Pröll assured them that politicians like himself, born after WW II, conscious of the burden of history and the moral responsibility connected to that history. He reassured "that no one forget these crimes against humanity."

The plaque is a reminder of the synagogue which was heavily damaged in 1938 and cleared away in 1991, and at the same time of the 300 Klosterneuburger Jews, among which many died as victims of Nazi terrorism. This was initiated by a member of the Municipal Council, Martina Enzmann. As Zelman claimed, it was Pröll’s mediation which allowed the project to materialize.